Laboratory Information System (LIS)

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information system, laboratory information system (read about: order entry), clinical pathology, accession number , maintenance table, mnemonic, worksheet, cumulative report, interim report, management report, audit trail , remote printing, line printer , barcode, RFID , back-up , fault tolerance , purge, instrument interface, application interface, interface engine, translation table, admission-discharge-transfer (ADT), test area, ODBC (open database connectivity), operations management, automated analyzer, batch versus continuous processing, laboratory automation

Read about


In the clinical laboratories, there are several common workflow processes that occur in the handling of a laboratory specimen:
  • Order entry and check-in of specimens
  • Specimen transport to the laboratory
  • Sending test orders to the analyzers
  • Results entry
  • Result reporting

The testing process in the laboratory can be viewed as preanalytic, analytic, and postanalytic workflow. The preanalytic phase starts from the decision to order a test and includes patient identification, proper specimen collection, transport, and delivery to the laboratory. Errors can be made in any step of this process, including the first decision in choosing a lab test (e.g. “lab test A” instead of “lab test B”). The analytic phase of testing involves the actual testing of specimens on laboratory instruments. Much of quality improvement processes in the past have focused on this analytic phase, as it is under direct control of the laboratory. Postanalytic workflow relate to turn-around time, the communication of results, and finally, the interpretation of results by the ordering clinician and patient.

Instrument interfaces

Specimen identification (barcodes)


#1: Meeting the LIS

A good laboratory information system (LIS) meets the needs of the clinical laboratories in accessioning specimens, sending orders to the right analyzers, and reporting results. This activity will involve learning about your laboratory’s information system and workflow, so you will need to get up from your desk and walk over there.
  1. Name the LIS system(s) in use in your laboratory.
  2. Track the different steps that a specimen goes through once it arrives in the clinical laboratory, and make a flowchart.
  3. List the advantages and disadvantages of long-term on-line storage of laboratory records.

Online Resources

(if available)


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Advanced courses

Expert corner

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This page was last modified by - JYKim_Path JYKim_Path on Nov 30, 2009 10:43 am.